UNDP releases socioeconomic impact assessment of COVID-19 in Cambodia



The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) on Thursday launched a policy brief that assessed the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 in Cambodia, said its statement.

The impact assessment uses three models, a static general equilibrium model (CGE), a social accounting matrix (SAM) and a global trade analysis model (GTAP)  to measure the impact and model scenarios that can mitigate further risks resulting from the pandemic, the statement said.

The SAM allowed for the measurement of the social and distributional impacts of the pandemic, including on poverty and employment, it said.

“Key findings of the assessment include the CGE model estimate that economic growth could contract from an original 6.5 per cent for 2020 to -4.1 per cent,’’ the statement said.

“Under this scenario, the poverty rate could nearly double to 17.6 per cent and unemployment could rise to 4.8 percent,’’ it said.

The statement said a social protection stimulus of 3.5 per cent of GDP (gross domestic product) would limit GDP contraction to -3.3 per cent and lessen the impact on unemployment and poverty to 4.4 percent and 14.2 per cent, respectively.

This social protection stimulus would prevent 570,000 people from sliding back into poverty, it said.

“The modelling of economic and social impacts can help us better understand the impact of this global pandemic on Cambodia and how we can best design stimulus packages in response,’’ said UNDP resident representative Nick Beresford.

“The model has made clear that social protection is better seen as an investment than a cost  acting to both stimulate growth and alleviate poverty,’’ he added.

Edited By: Halima Sheji/Ali Baba-Inuwa
Source: NAN


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